Many Glove Compartments: Selected Poems
Oskar Pastior

Many Glove Compartments: Selected Poems

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Poetry. Translated from the German by Harry Mathews, Christopher Middleton, Rosmarie Waldrop, and with a guest appearance by John Yau. Unlike Adam ("the old Stalin of language"), Pastior is not out to name animals or anything else. "Talking about things is not possible. Language, the text, speaks itself-this is the great dilemma to which theories of realism close their eyes." For Pastior, language itself is the stuff of life, a metabolism where not only words, but even concepts are made flesh. He explores it through puns, lists, strings, heaps, fields, dictionaries, alphabets, collage, montage, potpourris in orgiastic expansion, "thought-music as a leaping perspective."

Critics have praised his "sublime lack of seriousness," his "paradisal language," his "commonsense and commonscythe," his "revenge against logic." Only a fraction of Pastior's poems are translatable. But the translators hope that their versions will at least approximate the pleasure of Pastior's texts.

Full Description
Published by: Burning Deck
Pub date: 11/28/2001
Binding type: Paperback
Pages: 120
ISBN: 9781886224445
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  • Description

    Poetry. Translated from the German by Harry Mathews, Christopher Middleton, Rosmarie Waldrop, and with a guest appearance by John Yau. Unlike Adam ("the old Stalin of language"), Pastior is not out to name animals or anything else. "Talking about things is not possible. Language, the text, speaks itself-this is the great dilemma to which theories of realism close their eyes." For Pastior, language itself is the stuff of life, a metabolism where not only words, but even concepts are made flesh. He explores it through puns, lists, strings, heaps, fields, dictionaries, alphabets, collage, montage, potpourris in orgiastic expansion, "thought-music as a leaping perspective."

    Critics have praised his "sublime lack of seriousness," his "paradisal language," his "commonsense and commonscythe," his "revenge against logic." Only a fraction of Pastior's poems are translatable. But the translators hope that their versions will at least approximate the pleasure of Pastior's texts.